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The National Oceanic Satellite System (NOSS) is a joint endeavour, funded by NASA, NOAA, and DoD. The NOSS is a limited, real-time, operational demonstration for continuous observations of the ocean's surface winds, sea state, surface water temperature, wave height, ice, and other geophysical measurements under all weather conditions. The basic instrument compliment for the satellite consists of three previously-flown instruments (an improved verion of the Nimbus-7 coastal zone color scanner (CZCS/2), the SEASAT-A radar altimeter (ALT), and an improved version of the SEASAT-A scatterometer (SCAT/2)); and one now in development, the large antenna multichannel microwave radiometer (LAMMR). The NOSS satellite will be launched by the Space Shuttle into a 300-km intermediate orbit. The spacecraft bus provides the propulsion capability to attain the mission's required sun-synchronous orbits of 600 to 900 km, and to return to Shuttle orbit altitude on command. The design duration of the operational demonstration is 5 years.

Alternate Names

  • Nat'l Oceanic Satellite

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 
Launch Vehicle: Shuttle
Launch Site: Vandenberg AFB, United States

Funding Agency

  • NASA-Office of Applications (United States)


  • Earth Science

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office



NameRoleOriginal AffiliationE-mail
Mr. Gilbert A. BranchflowerProject ManagerNASA Goddard Space Flight Center
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